ReLEx SMILE stands for “Refractive Lenticule Extraction, Small Incision Lenticule Extraction.” It’s a minimally invasive laser vision correction treatment that uses only one femtosecond laser for the entire procedure, without any blades or flaps.
ReLEx SMILE can be effective in correcting myopia (short-sightedness) and astigmatism, especially for patients with severe myopia (500-1000 degrees), astigmatism (up to 500 degrees), dry eyes, and contact lens intolerance.
Unlike other laser corrective surgeries, ReLEx SMILE is carried out using a moderate, low-pressure laser so that the patient’s vision is not disrupted!
Here’s everything you need to know about ReLEx SMILE Procedure, its benefits, and after-care instructions.
How Does ReLEx SMILE Work?
The procedure takes between 5 to 10 minutes per eye, and it’s completely painless! However, you’ll feel a slight pressure sensation when the doctor uses a ‘lid speculum’ to keep eyelids open and prevent you from blinking.
A low-energy laser will then be poisoned over your eye to cut the lenticular corneal tissue with a small incision of less than 4mm, allowing the surgeon to adjust the corneal shape and the way light bends into the eye.
Who Is Eligible For ReLEx SMILE Surgery?
This procedure would be suitable for you if you have:
- High ametropia
- Thin cornea (min. 480 micrometres)
- Dry eyes
- Short-sightedness with up to -10 diopters
ReLEx SMILE Procedure Benefits
There are no flap-related issues in ReLEx SMILE since the Lenticules are carefully removed through a small incision, preserving the cornea’s stability. Therefore, the patient won’t experience postoperative dryness or corneal nerve damage.
ReLEx SMILE incisions are up to 80% smaller than other laser surgeries, requiring only a 4-mm incision compared to the 20-mm incision in LASIK. This ultimately offers the patient a speedier recovery time and less irritation or discomfort post-op.
Since the corneal flap won’t be reformed during surgery, patients are less likely to experience complications such as blurry eyes, halos, or glares.
100% Femtosecond Laser
Unlike most laser eye surgery where multiple laser technologies are applied, ReLEx SMILE involves using femtosecond laser only, which is considered the most advanced and safe method for correcting visual disorders.
Your surgeon will thoroughly examine your eyes after treatment to ensure your safety, and you’ll be provided with eye drops to keep your eyes moist and avoid infection and irritation. In addition, our ophthalmologists at Novomed recommend avoiding using electronic devices that reflect light, such as televisions, cell phones, and other monitors, for about 2-3 days to prevent dryness.
You should also plan your means of transportation to get back home safely, seeing as you won’t be able to drive.
Please note that you may experience some tingling sensation and sensitivity to light for the first 24 hours after surgery, and you needn’t worry since those are expected side effects. However, you must be careful not to indulge in any intense physical activity such as exercise or swimming in the first week following surgery.
To learn more about the ReLEx SMILE laser eye procedure, book your appointment online, consult the world’s top eye surgeons, and explore our advanced treatments for better eyesight!